December 3, 1938 Prague and Berlin signed a secret agreement under which Czechoslovakia could not "keep strengthening and fences on the border with Germany." The fate of the remaining areas of the country, so Makarov, was sealed. March 14, 1939 Adolf Hitler summoned Czechoslovak president Emil Gahu in Berlin and invited him to take a protectorate of Germany. Czechoslovak president agreed to it, and the German army entered the government effectively without any resistance from the Czech army. March 15, 1939 decree of the Führer's personal Bohemia and Moravia were declared a protectorate of Germany. The chief executive of Bohemia and Moravia was appointed by Hitler Reichsprotektor, he became Konstantin von Neurath (from 1932 to 1938 was the Reich Minister of Foreign Affairs of Germany, and then a minister without a knapsack.) The presidency was saved, but he was a formality, as it previously held Emil Hacha. Municipal structures were reinforced by officials of the Reich. Slovakia officially became independent state, but in reality has become a vassal of Nazi Germany. It was led by a theologian and a favorite Glinkova Slovak People's Party (clerical-nationalist Slovak Party) Jozef Tiso.
The population of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia were mobilized in the labor force, which was to work for the victory of the Third Reich. To control the Czech industry were established special management. The Czechs had to work in the coal mines, iron and steel industry and the military, increasing military and economic might of Germany, part of the local youth was sent to the Reich. In the first months of the German occupation, repression was mild and did not cause a huge public outcry.
The armed forces of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia
The German authorities to support homeland security and order in the summer of 1939 organized the armed forces of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia. To service allowed only "Aryans", ie, not the Jews and the Gypsies. Most of the commanders and previously served as a soldier in the Czechoslovak army. They even kept the original shape, logo and reward system (a form of the German standard was introduced only in 1944).
The armed forces have had to tread his own with 12 battalions of 480-500 men each (a total of about 7 thousand people). Apart from the infantry companies in the battalions were cycling and horse squads company. It is armed fighter were upgraded Mannlicher rifles, light and heavy machine guns, which are produced in factories "Ceska Zbrojovka". Heavy weapons were not. Czech battalions received puzzle protect communications, basic facilities, to conduct engineering and rescue work, to help police forces. The commander of the armed forces of the Protectorate was appointed brigadier general of the army last Czechoslovakia Jaroslav Eminger.
In 1944, 11 Czech battalion was transferred to Italy for the protection of communications (one battalion was left to guard the residence of President Emile Gahi in Hradcany). But soon a few hundred Czechs defected to the side of Italian partisans, and were transferred into the Czechoslovak Armoured Brigade under the command of General Alois Fox, which at that time was at war in France. The German command was forced to disarm the remaining Czech fighter and send them to engineering.
In addition, the Czechs fought wars with the Waffen SS. At the end of May 1942 in the Protectorate organized the "Supervision on youth education in Bohemia and Moravia." In the company perceived the young people aged 10 — 18 years and brought up in the spirit of National Socialism, develop physical education. Senior members of the "curators" had the opportunity to enlist in the special purpose units of the SS, and the younger ones — in the "Exemplary link." In the future, these structures were to become the core of the Bohemian SS.
In February 1945 there was the first set of the Czechs in the SS Police Regiment "Brisk", which became a part of the 31st voluntary Grenadier Division of the SS "Bohemia and Moravia". In the same year, about one thousand of the former Czechoslovak fighter and commander of the cavalry became part of the 37th created a voluntary SS Cavalry Division "Lützow". First, in May 1945, during the Prague uprising, members of various Czech pro-fascist organizations and groups of fighters SS special purpose company was formed Voluntary SS "St. Wenceslas" (77 people). Roth joined the German garrison of Prague. Part of the Czech SS men, after the defeat of Germany, entered in the French Overseas Legion and fought wars in Indochina.
Czechoslovak troops in formation of the anti-Hitler coalition
Poland. After the entry of the Czech Republic, the Third Reich, about 4 thousand commanders and former fighter of the Czechoslovak Army, as civilian officials, who did not want to stay on the ground subordinate Berlin, moved to the Polish government. At the end of April 1939 was established Czechoslovak foreign group, which initially included about 100 people. In addition, the movement began in the Czechoslovak military warships to France, where more than 1,200 people resettled, the third part of which was the pilots.
In Poland itself formed the Czechoslovak Legion (about 800 people) and the Czechoslovak intelligence squadron (93 people). Legion led by Lieutenant-General of the former Czechoslovak army Prhala Leo, his assistant Colonel Ludvik Svoboda. Formation of Czech units at the time of the invasion of German troops had not been completed because they took an errant role in the fighting (during the battles in Galicia was lost 5 killed and 6 wounded). One part of the Czechoslovak Legion was captured near the village Rakovets under Ternopil parts of the Red Army. The other part — about 250 people, including General Prhala, crossed the border with Romania and the different ways to get to France or to the French possessions in the Middle East.
France. In late September, the French military command was sformirovyvaetsya of Czechoslovak infantry battalion. October 2, 1939 the head of the French government and Edouard Daladier Czechoslovak salting Stephen Osusky signed an agreement on the formation of the Czechoslovak army in France. November 17, 1939 in Paris officially recognized the Czechoslovak Nation
al Committee, headed by former Czechoslovakian president Edvard Benes as the legitimate government of Czechoslovakia in exile.
Of Czechs and Slovaks living in France and arrived in Poland since the beginning of 1940 steel forms the 1st Czechoslovak Division. Set it was a volunteer, and through mobilization. In the Czechoslovak division includes two infantry regiments (3rd Regiment had not staffed), an artillery regiment, battalion, antitank battery and battalion. Headed by General Rudolf connection Wiest. By May 1940, the division had 11,405 people (45% of Czechs, Slovaks, 44%, 11% — Russian, Ukrainians and Jews). In addition, in France were formed Czech aircraft units, numbering about 1,800 people.
Since the beginning of active hostilities in the Franco-German front, the 1st Czechoslovak Division received puzzle to cover the retreat of the French troops. Czechoslovak units took part in the battles of the Marne (13 — 17 June) and the Loire (16 — 17 June). In their division lost only 400 men killed, 32 of Czechoslovak soldiers were awarded the Military Cross. June 22nd Division was ordered to lay down their guns. About 3 thousand fighter divisions and 2 thousand Czechs from other units were shipped to England.
UK. Not counting the Czech military, which specifically crossed the English Channel, about 200 people after the surrender of Paris from the French Lebanese fled to British Palestine. At the end of October 1940 in Palestine in the British army began forms the 11th Czechoslovak battalion. Division commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Karel Klapalek. In December 1940, the unit was 800 and the battalion was trained in a camp near Jericho.
In the spring of 1941 the 11th battalion, together with Polish connections guarded camp for Italian and German prisoners of war (there were around 10 thousand people) near Alexandria in Egypt. In summer, the battalion took part in the battles against the forces of the French Vichy government in Syria. It is interesting that here the Battalion faced with their compatriots who had served in the French Legion of overseas. Prisoners have allowed the Czechs and Slovaks to join the battalion.
In October 1941, the battalion was transferred to North Africa, where he took part in the battles against the blocked Italian-German forces in Tobruk. In the spring of 1942 the battalion was transferred to Asia Minor and began to reshape its 200th light anti-aircraft regiment. In the summer of 1943 the regiment was transferred to the UK, where it was disbanded, and the personnel involved in the Czechoslovak Armoured Brigade.
Czech pilots took part in the defense of the UK air space. For example, July 12, 1940 in Duxford were formed several Czechoslovak fighter squadrons. By October 31, 1941, they shot down 56 German planes. Since December 1943, the Allied air raids on Germany began to take the 313th Czechoslovak Bomber Squadron. In the course of these attacks killed 560 Czech pilots. Czechoslovak pilots fought wars in the British Air Force until the end of the war in Europe. The most effective Czechoslovak pilot in the Royal Air Force was the captain Karel Kutgelvasher — he shot down 20 enemy aircraft. Sergeant Josef Frantisek had to his credit 17 enemy aircraft, Captain Alois Vasyatka — 16 aircraft, the captain Frantisek Perzhina — 15 cars.
London recognized the Czechoslovak government-in-exile July 21, 1940 October 25, 1940 after a joint decision of English and Czech governments began to form the 1st Czechoslovak Mixed Brigade (until 1944 she defended the southern English coast). In 1944, the Mixed Brigade reformed the Czechoslovak Armoured Brigade under the supervision of Brigadier General Alois PM. August 30, 1944 the brigade was landed in the French Normandy and early October was in reserve. From 7 October to the surrender of Germany, the brigade took part in the siege of Dunkirk. During this time, the armored brigade lost 201 men killed and 461 wounded. May 12 composite detachment of the brigade arrived in Prague for a symbolic entry to the Czech capital.
Czechoslovak pilots in the UK. 1943
Czechoslovak units in the Red Army
As previously mentioned, in September 1939, Reddish Army near the village Rakovets under Ternopil took captive several hundred fighter and commander of the Czechoslovak Legion, which came in the Polish armed forces. They were interned in camps for Polish prisoners in Ukraine at first, and then near Suzdal. In April 1940, according to the agreement between Moscow and Paris in France was focused 1st trucks with 45 legions. During the 1940-1941 years. France and the Middle East sent 10 batches of internees Czechs and Slovaks. By June 1941, the internment camps in the Soviet Union left 157 former legionaries.
July 18, 1941 in the United Kingdom Russian salting Ivan Maisky and Czechoslovak Minister of Foreign Affairs Jan Masaryk signed between the Soviet Union and the Czechoslovak government-in-exile on joint action against the Third Reich. September 27, 1941 in the Russian government decided to call in the Czechoslovak part of the terrain of the USSR "Soviet people Czechoslovak nationality."
First, in February 1942 Buzuluk in military camps of the Polish Army under General Wladyslaw Anders began forms the 1st Czechoslovak independent battalion. His commander was Lieutenant Colonel of the former Czechoslovak army Ludvik Svoboda. It must be said that this man had a very rich biography already before the Czechoslovak head of the Soviet Union. Ludwig was born November 25, 1895 at the family farm in the village of Groznatin Austro-Hungarian Empire. He specialized agronomist, was drafted into the Austro-Hungarian army in 1915. Freedom of waging war on the Eastern Front against the Russian, then voluntarily surrendered. Detained in a camp near Kiev, after his release he served in the city's fire department, in September 1916, joined the Czechoslovak Legion (commander of a platoon, company). He participated in a number of fights on the side of the Russian Imperial Army. After the revolution and the uprising of the Czechoslovak Corps took part in the battles of the Red Army with the (command of a company, battalion). In 1920 he returned to his homeland. Since 1921, he served in the Czechoslovak army with the rank of captain. By the time of the occupation of Czechoslovakia, the Germans was the commander of the battalion. Was dismissed from the army and became a member of the anti-fascist group, after its disclosure, fled to Poland. In the Polish state was an active participant in the creation of the Czechoslovak military units in the Polish army. After the defeat of Poland, was captured by the Red Army, was in the internment camps. He was an active supporter of the creation of the Czechoslovak military units in the Red Army.
To replenish the 1st Czechoslovak Battalion February 3, 1942 Municipal Committee of Defense of the USSR announced an amnesty for all the people of Czechoslovakia. November 19, 1942 the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet declared an amnesty for all prisoners of Ukrainians, Ruthenians and Slovaks from Hungary, who were previously citizens of Czechoslovakia. By January 1943 the Czechoslovak battalion was 974 (52% were Ukrainians, Ruthenians and Jews, 48% — Czechs and Slovaks). They were armed with Russian small gun, outfitted in the British form with the Czechoslovak signs of difference.
Valentine (Wanda) Binevska born 09.27.1925 in Uman, Cherkasy region in the Czech family. In 1942, Wanda joined the emerging 1st Czechoslovak independent battalion, graduated from the medical corps courses and snipers. She took part in the battles for Kiev and Sokolowo as observer-sniper. In 1944 he was thrown into the rear of the enemy, in Slovakia, where he led the war in the Slovak insurgent groups. March 3, 1945 in the town of Banska Bystrica was captured by the Germans, from March 17 was able to escape by joining the guerrillas "Stalin". The war ended in the Czechoslovak army sergeant.
In March 1943, the battalion became part of the 3rd Panzer Army of the Voronezh Front and the first time joined the battle near the village of Sokolowo near Kharkov. In the process of Kharkiv defense operations battalion, together with Russian connections reflects the German attack. In this battle, the Czechoslovak battalion suffered heavy losses (calculated only killed 153 people and 122 — missing and killed almost all the company and platoon commanders), but showed the highest morale, and good training. The battalion was taken to the rear and in May Novokhopyorsk its steel forms the basis of the 1st Czechoslovak independent infantry brigade. As a team, not including infantry battalions and a tank battalion entered (20 tanks and 10 armored cars). By September 1943, the brigade was 3517 people (more than 60% were Ruthenians, other Czechs, Slovaks, Jews and Russian). The brigade was reinforced by officers who had arrived from the UK and the Middle East.
Commander of the 1st Czechoslovak separate brigade, Colonel Svoboda (sits on the right) with co-workers.
At the end of September 1943 the brigade was sent to the front. In November, she is part of the 1st Ukrainian Front took part in the battle of Kiev, near Vasylkova, Ore., white church and Zhashkiv. During these fights just killed brigade lost 384 people. In the spring of 1944 the brigade was taken to the rear for the re-formation and replenishment. On the basis of the teams became forms the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps. Its made by the conscripts of the Red Army liberated districts of Volyn and the Carpathians, as Slovak and Czechoslovak prisoners of war commanders had arrived from the UK. By September 1944 the Czechoslovak Corps numbered 16,171 people. As a part of the body were three separate infantry brigade, separate airborne brigade, separate armored brigade (23 tanks and 3 self-propelled guns, commander — Captain Vladimir Janko), an artillery regiment, Fighter Aviation Regiment (21 fighter, commander — Captain Frantisek Faytl), a separate battalion, separate battalion. Corps commander at the suggestion of the Czechoslovak government was Brigadier General Jan Kratochvil.
In addition, since the beginning of 1944, Efremov (Tula region) began to create the 2nd Czechoslovak separate airborne brigade. It became the backbone of the officers and men of the 1st Division of the Slovak, who defected in December 1943 near Melitopol on the side of the Red Army.
In August 1944, the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps in the 1st Ukrainian Front was acting in the Carpathian region. In the East Carpathian operation body has been in the process of the coming of the Red Army that had begun to assist the Slovak revolt. But in the first day same role in the battle (September 9), due to a weak intelligence organization and poor management, two brigades of the Czechoslovak Corps came under heavy German artillery fire and suffered significant losses (611 people). Russian Marshal Konev Kratochvíl changed his order at the Liberty. Czechoslovak troops continued coming, breaking through in fierce battles one after another defensive opponent in the mountains. September 20th Corps was liberated Dukla and 6 October storm captured perfectly fortified Dukla Pass, which was located on an old Czechoslovak border. On this day, Russian and Czechoslovak troops entered the area of Czechoslovakia, ushering her liberation from the Germans. On the same day began planting 2nd separate airborne brigade in Slovakia. Troopers joined the insurgency and take heavy fighting with German troops. October 31, when the Slovak uprising was defeated, the brigade defected to guerrilla warfare and was renamed the 2nd Czechoslovak partisan brigade. This team has teamed up with the advancing Russian, Czechoslovakian and Romanian troops Feb. 19, 1945.
Warriors of the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps, October 6, 1944.
Warriors of the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps in the state border, in 1944.
Until November the Czechoslovak Corps continued coming, then turned to defense. More to the rear of the Czechoslovak not displayed, acting at the forefront of the war. The case was at war in the 38th Army of the 4th Ukrainian Front. Training of personnel and the completion of the compounds produced in the replacement and training units of housing. First, in 1945 the 1st Czechoslovak Independent Fighter Aviation Regiment was reorganized into the 1st Czechoslovak Mixed Air Division (consisting of 65 aircraft) under the supervision of Colonel Ludwig Boudin. Air Division has taken an active role in the battle for Moravia.
In January 1945, the Corps took part in the Western Carpathian operation in March — the Moravian Ostrava-operation. April 4, 1945 he was appointed commander of the connection Brigadier General Karel Klapalek. April 30 Czechoslovak Corps actually entered the land and the Czech Republic continued stubborn battles with German troops surrender to Germany. May 10, 1945 cutting-edge part of the body to Russian tanks entered Prague. The loss of the Czechoslovak Corps, together with the losses of a separate battalion and a brigade in 1943-1944,. amounted to 4,011 people dead, missing and dead from wounds and 14 202 people — health.
May 17, 1945 a parade of Czechoslovak Corps in Prague, together with the rear and educational parts of its population at the time was 31,725 people. Since June 1945 on the basis of body steel forms the 1st Army Czechoslovak People's Army.
JS-2 of the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps in the center of Prague.